off one's feed

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English[edit]

Adjective[edit]

off one's feed

  1. (of an animal) Not eating normally.
    • 1915 Jack London, The Little Lady of the Big House, ch. 12:
      "Nothing serious," the veterinarian added. "He was just off his feed a trifle."
    • 1998 Aug. 12, Rick Lyman, "Drought in Texas and Oklahoma Stunting Crops and Economies," New York Times (retrieved 2 Aug. 2012):
      "My dairy farmers tell me that because of the heat the cows are just off their feed."
  2. (idiomatic, of a person) Rather unwell, especially with a reduced or altered appetite; somewhat disoriented or disconcerted.
    • 1841, Charles Dickens, Master Humphrey's Clock, ch. 4:
      “He wos took wery bad one arternoon, arter having been off his feed, and wery shaky on his legs for some veeks.”
    • 1903, F. Marion Crawford, "Man Overboard!":
      I asked some questions about Jack Benton, and one of the men told me that he was off his feed, and hardly ate anything, and swallowed all the coffee he could lay his hands on, and had used up all his own tobacco and had begun on what his brother had left.
    • 1915, P. G. Wodehouse, Psmith, Journalist, ch. 24:
      ‘Something is the matter with Psmith. He is off his feed. He should try Blenkinsop's Balm for the Bilious.’
    • 1954 June 28, "Sport: Bumbling Champ," Time:
      The heavyweight champion of the world was off his feed. . . . Rocky, ordinarily a first-rate trencherman, was pushing away from the breakfast table after downing only two eggs and a pair of lamb chops.

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